What are essential oils?
Essential oils are natural, aromatic compounds found in the seeds, flowers, bark, rind and leaves of plants, extracted and distilled for health benefits. They work with our bodies to address concerns on a cellular level. They are supercharged, 50 -70X more powerful than herbs. They get to the root of what is going on. It's a very different viewpoint from traditional medicine where the focus is on symptom management. Each oil contain hundreds of different compounds that work together to help our bodies heal itself without building up resistance so things can be addressed naturally. Essential oils have been around since the beginning of time and have been used since then. The Egyptians were using plant extracts back in 3,000 B.C. for health, religious ceremonies and for beauty regimes. Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, conducted research on some 300 plants and believed in treating the whole person instead of just the symptoms, hence his use of essential oils with his patients. The Romans used oils to scent the hair, body and bed and eventually perfumes were made with oils. In Biblical times, Frankincense and Myrrh was given to the Christ child with gold. Essential oils and herbs that are specifically mentioned in the bible include cedarwood, frankincense, fir, cinnamon, myrrh, myrtle and spikenard. Jean Valet, was an army physician and surgeon who took it upon himself to prove that essential oils were therapeutic and could be used in everyday medicine. He used oils regularly on injured soldiers. So as you can see essential oils are not a fad. They have been around forever and the research has proven how effective they are in treating our bodies naturally. Click on this short video to see exactly what an essential oil is.
How do I use essential oils?
There are three ways to use essential oils, aromatically, topically, and internally. The term aromatherapy came from the fact that essential oils are very aromatic. Diffusers remain the most popular way to disperse oils. They are devices that are specifically made for essential oils. They break down the oils into usable particles and disperse into the air. Another way to use oils aromatically is to place a drop or two into the palms of your hands, rub together, and inhale. Since oils are fat soluble, they are readily absorbed into your skin when used topically. They are absorbed within 30 seconds and enter the bloodstream by 20 minutes working on the entire system. Many oils are safe to use without dilution, however, I recommend diluting for several reasons. First, the oil will not evaporate as quickly. Also applying a carrier oil (I use fractionated coconut oil which is when the fat is removed from the coconut oil) on top of an essential oil, it will allow the oil to be driven in at a deeper level. The best place to put essential oils if taking topically is the bottoms of the feet. You may also place on an area of concern, such as a sore muscle. Internally is the last way to use essential oils. I take them in an empty gel cap or if I am feeling under the weather, I will gargle with them. Small amounts should be used when taken internally and it is not recommended to give children oils internally. Here is a great video with Dr. David Hill of doTerra explaining the different ways to use essential oils.
I would love to hear your thoughts on essential oils and answer any questions you might have. Please post below and I'll be sure to check to and answer them :)